Friday, March 14, 2014

"I'm So bored, I'm Going to Die!"

"I'm so bored, I'm going to die!" How many of us, as parents, have gotten that text from our child while they were in class? I'm not proud to say that I have been known to text my kids while they were in school, but I have. And I've received countless texts like that and worse. 'This professor is the worst-so boring.' Since texting became the primary means of communication between parents and children, those types of texts must number in the tens of thousands!

And, I too, have sent those texts to my girls. Two years ago, as I was completing my administrator's degree, I sent many of my own. Sad to say, the only redeeming quality of one of my night classes was that my daughter also had a terribly boring class at the same time and we could commiserate via text.

What's wrong with the system? Why are our bright and active children being made to sit and listen and sit? We have a national obesity epidemic. Most children don't get enough exercise. Has anyone made the connection between this and sitting in classrooms all day? What ever happened to DOING things?

I read something online last night that has been bothering me about kinesthetic learners:
"Making up about 5% of the population, tactile and kinesthetic learners absorb information best by doing, experiencing, touching, moving or being active in some way." (http://www.studyingstyle.com/tactile-kinesthetic-learners.html)

Really? Five percent? I can't believe that's the real number...

I've been talking a lot to students lately about how they learn. So many of them tell me that when they DO something, they remember it, and it empowers them, because they know they figured something out in order to make it. So who decided that only 5% learn this way?

I don't think students are exposed to this type of learning anymore. Instead, they sit and listen and are expected to accumulate knowledge. But if they're bored, do we really think they are going to remember anything? People of all ages need to DO things, to make things and to learn to use the knowledge that's out there to take action and solve real problems. Let's stop boring our kids to death. Let's allow them to learn actively.